Serbia vs England Prediction: Kane to open proceedings

 | Saturday 15th June 2024, 8:30am

Saturday 15th June 2024, 8:30am

Serbia vs England predictions tips Sunday 16 June

England begin their Euro 2024 campaign on Sunday (20:00, BBC One) with a clash against Serbia in Group C at the Veltins-Arena, home of Schalke. Gareth Southgate's side will be looking for a better performance to the one they delivered in the slender 1-0 defeat against Iceland at Wembley last week.

The Three Lions are the joint-favourites at 4/1 to win the Euros this summer, but it is going to take a lot for them to achieve glory in Germany. Serbia will be sure to provide them with a tough opening fixture, which England cannot afford to underestimate. Read on for my Serbia vs England prediction, including match odds and team news.

Serbia vs England Betting Tips

  • Harry Kane first goalscorer @ 11/4
  • England and both teams to score @ 12/5
  • England to win 2-1 @ 7/1

Serbia vs England Odds

Serbia are 7/1 to take down the favourites on matchday one and start their campaign in style. This gives them an implied probability of 12.5%. England are 4/9 to win here, giving them a 69.2% chance of victory.

Both teams to score is on offer at 11/10 and over 2.5 goals is valued at 5/6.

After scoring 19 goals in La Liga for Real Madrid, Jude Bellingham is 13/5 to score anytime on Sunday, while captain Harry Kane is 11/4 to open the scoring.

bf_euros_top_price_eng_800x258_euro_hub Team News

Serbia have a core group of players who they will be relying on to help them progress from the group stage.

Strikers Aleksandar Mitrovic (their all-time leading scorer) and Dusan Vlahovic will have to carry much of the goal burden themselves, while they will be hoping for creativity from the likes of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Dusan Tadic and Filip Kostic.

England have a lot of quality options in attack and Southgate will be hoping to be vindicated after deciding not to bring either Marcus Rashford or Jack Grealish to Germany.

Kane is almost guaranteed to start every game he is fit to play this summer, which had some people questioning over the selection of three strikers, with Ollie Watkins and Ivan Toney behind him in the pecking order.

There are players in the squad who have experience playing as a false nine such as Foden, Bellingham, Jarrod Bowen, Anthony Gordon and Cole Palmer. The competition for the places around Kane is going to be fierce and all of these players will be desperate to start in this opener.

The most pressing concern is the defence, which looks to be the Three Lions' biggest weakness. There's no Harry Maguire, Jarrad Branthwaite was omitted, so that leaves John Stones, Marc Guehi, Ezri Konsa, Lewis Dunk and Joe Gomez as centre-back options.

Whoever starts next to Stones, should he feature on Sunday, is likely to be his main partner throughout the tournament.

Harry Kane first goalscorer @ 11/4

To start us off I am backing England's record men's goalscorer to do what he does best against Serbia. He scored four goals in seven outings at Euro 2020 and he will be hoping to at least match that goal return on this occasion.

He heads into this tournament in great form, having scored 42 goals across all competitions for Bayern Munich this term, so Serbia will be well aware of the threat he possesses. Kane is able to score goals from a variety of situations which is why he is one of the best forwards in the world, and why I fancy him to get on the scoresheet this weekend.

I've gone for him to score first because there is better value to be had than backing him to score anytime at 19/20. He's England's greatest goalscorer and is their striker, so most of the Three Lions' chances are bound to come his way in this fixture.

Harry Kane first goalscorer at 11/4 England and both teams to score @ 12/5

It will be tough but England's attacking quality should shine through here and get them off to a winning start. The likes of Kane, Palmer, Bukayo Saka, Foden, Bellingham and Gordon all have a lot of attacking quality and so goals really shouldn't be an issue them.

With that said, I can see this opening fixture being tricky, especially after the Iceland result. Southgate's options on the bench should be enough to help them over the line if needed but it is England's centre-back options which are troubling.

I don't think they will be as defensively solid without Maguire and I think they will susceptible to goals here, especially against the powerful Mitrovic. I reckon England will prevail but I don't think they will run away with it.

England and both teams to score at 12/5 England to win 2-1 @ 7/1

If I had to go for a scoreline, I'm inclined to go for 2-1 England. As I mentioned above, the Three Lions's attacking options are stacked and their quality should shine through against Serbia.

I don't see them running riot because the first game is always a testing of the water, and also because I do think Serbia will prove to be tough opposition. I see them scoring, too, because I am not confident in England's defensive options.

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